Nominations are open for the 2018 Co-operative of the Year awards.
Organised by Co-operatives UK and sponsored by the Co‑operative Councils’ Innovation Network, the awards recognise some of the thriving co-op businesses in the UK.
As in previous years, there are categories for Breakthrough, Inspiring and Leading co-operatives, which have turnovers of up to £1m, £1m-£30m and £30m+, respectively. But 2018 will also see a new award – Co‑operative Council of the Year.
This will recognise best practice as demonstrated by co-operative councils and celebrates the work they deliver at a local level.
Nominations for the four award categories will be accepted until 29 April.
Nominations can be submitted here via an online form, setting out in no more than 250 words why you are nominating a co-op. The only proviso is that the co-op being nominated must be a member of Co-operatives UK, and cannot be one of the previous year’s winners or shortlisted contenders.
Up to five co-operatives for each category will be shortlisted by the nominations panel, made up of Co‑operatives UK’s chair, secretary general and membership manager. Online voting will run from 4 May to 15 June, with the winners announced at Co-operative Congress in London on Saturday 23 June.
The Breakthrough Co‑operative of the Year will be offered £1,000 worth of specialist business advice from The Hive, Co-operatives UK’s business support programme in partnership with the Co-op Bank.
“As a member-owned society, this award win is particularly important to us because it was voted for by our members,” said Ben Reid, chief executive of the Midcounties Co-operative, Co-operative of the Year winner in 2015.
“The fact that they took the time to go online and support us shows that they are really excited and engaged with the work we’re doing in their local community.”